AIL Rugby: Shannon chalk up needed win

Shannon chalked up a badly needed victory at Crowley Park when they proved too strong for a Galwegians side who had Connacht players back on duty for the first time this season.

Galwegians 16 Shannon 38

Shannon chalked up a badly needed victory at Crowley Park when they proved too strong for a Galwegians side who had Connacht players back on duty for the first time this season.

Galwegians had the services of Eric Elwood for the first time in this campaign but they were in trouble at half-time when they only led 9-8 having played with the strong wind.

Prop Peter Bracken, flanker Junior Charlie and centre Pat Duignan, also returned from inter-pro duty with Connacht but they should have done more in that opening half.

Elwood slotted over two penalties in the opening twelve minutes but once the Shannon defence got themselves organised, the home side rarely looked like getting a try while they had the wind.

Elwood added a third penalty after 18 minutes but Shannon got a big boost when their place kicker, winger Tom Cregan, slotted over a 26th minute penalty after Connacht were penalised for offside as Shannon came at them with menace for the first time in the game.

Shannon reduced the interval to 9-8 when centre Mossie Lawlor touched down after John Lacey had begun a move which saw right winger Melvin McMahon cut the home defence to shreds with impressive pace.

Cregan missed a penalty shortly after the restart but Shannon's stranglehold on proceedings was emphasised after 50 minutes when Nathan Buckley got in for a try after Cregan had broken from the back.

That settled the issue and Cregan added two more penalties before Marcus Horan peeled away from a maul to race through for his side's third try ten minutes from time.

Connacht U-21 winger Barry Liddy scored a consolation try for the home side two minutes later, with Elwood adding the difficult convert into the wind.

Shannon secured a bonus point in stoppage time when scrum-half Derek Hegarty crossed under the posts.

Scorers: Galwegians: E. Elwood, three pens, one con; B. Liddy, try. Shannon: T. Cregan, four pens, three cons; M. Lawlor, try, N. Buckley, try; M. Horan, try; D. Hegarty, try

Galwegians: R. Lee; B. Liddy, P. Duignan, M. Murphy, G. Brady; E. Elwood, J.. Heaslip; A. Kershaw, J. Flannery, P. Bracken; G. Heaslip, P. Casserly; J. Muldoon, B. Gavin, J. Charlie. Replacements: K. Tierney for Flannery, inj. 7 mins; I. Muldoon for Casserly, 50 mins.

Shannon: J. Lacey; M. McMahon, M. Lawlor, A. Thompson, T. Gregory; N. McNamara, D. Hegarty; M. Horan, C. Tucker, F. Roche; N. Buckley, T. Hayes; R. Collins, D. Quigley, C. McMahon. Replacements: G. McNamara for Roche, 62 mins.

Referee: D. Tyndall (IRFU).

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